Piner High School government teacher Sharon Stevens “shut down” her planned curriculum Tuesday to focus her class discussion on the current federal shutdown/standoff. Students were encouraged to write letters to their representative in the Senate and/or House of Representatives, according to Stevens. She collected nearly 80 letters, including this one that she forwarded to ExtraCredit:

Dear Barbara Boxer,

My name is Melissa Sjoden, I am from Santa Rosa and I am currently a senior at Piner High School.  I’m not wealthy or rich or anything.  I’m just the average citizen.  And to be honest, the Government shutdown scares me.  It really does.  I don’t know what is going to happen.  I’m scared for the welfare and being of my family and friends.  I’m worried about every single citizen in this country, that will be affected by the shutdown.  In my opinion, when it comes to the government, they represent the citizens.  If they truly cared or truly represented us, they would think of the citizens and of their welfare.  The government’s job is to protect the citizens of the USA.  And by not coming to a compromise, they go against their sole duty, and the very reason they got elected in the first place.  The shutdown was the cause of not remembering what their true job is–of protecting the people and what is best for them.  I am Melissa Sjoden, and I represent the soul, will, and strength of the people of the United States of America.


Truly yours,

Melissa Sjoden